When Bridesmaids came out back in 2011 it took audiences by storm. No one was expecting it to be the hit success that it was as it went from being a movie that looked like it might showcase some of Kristin Wiig’s talents to a film that produced an Academy Award nomination and hit it big with the box office.
Paul Feig has now followed up the 2011 smash hit of his with The Heat which seems to be doing as well as the basketball team that shres the same name. With comedy genius Melissa McCarthy headlining a cast with Sandra Bullock, The Heat is also surprising audiences and critics as it went from being a film that looked like a limp follow up to Bridesmaids to a picture scoring over 80 percent on Rotten Tomatoes among top critics.
Not everyone is a fan of the film and not all of the top critics in the country have reviewed the film as Richard Roeper and Peter Travers are two notable names not listed yet. But Michael Phillips and Claudia Puig of the Chicago Tribune and USA Today, respectively, had praise for the film as did mostly every other critic who has reviewed the film.
The Heat is the best female buddy-cop movie since, well, ever. The formulaic male-dominated genre needed some gender diversity. … Melissa McCarthy with Sandra Bullock is no less predictable, but it’s bawdier and funnier than most of its masculine counterparts.
Chicago Tribune reviewer Micheal Phillips was equally as high on the film praising it’s comedic elements as well as the performances by both McCarthy and Bullock.
At its sharpest, “The Heat” actually moves and banters like a comedy, with sharply timed and edited dialogue sequences driven by a couple of pros ensuring a purposeful sense of momentum. The story places Sandra Bullock, playing a fastidious FBI agent, as an opposing force to Melissa McCarthy’s brazen Boston cop. Mostly they’re funny because of the material; elsewhere, they’re funny in spite of it.
Not surprisingly, the film went over swimingly with female critics and it’s rightfully so. There are too few films today that feature strong and funny female roles in lead roles, yet that’s exactly what The Heat has. But not everyone is a fan of the film as Wall Street Journal reviewer Joe Morgenstern disliked the film not because it had female leads but because he felt McCarthy was being exploited.
One wonders, though, what the future holds for Ms. McCarthy’s career if every new film is going to exploit her more shamelessly than the previous one. Beware the long arm of the law of diminishing returns.
Overall though it seems the film is doing very well with top critics and while it likely won’t retain it’s status in the 80 percent range, it’s looking like The Heat is on it’s way to being ‘Certified Fresh’ before the weekend it through.